Opinion: From how we use water to big data, Maricopa County is leading the way.

The fastest-growing county in the nation can also be its most forward-thinking if its leaders prioritize three things.

1.  Use water, parks and energy wisely

With 200 people moving to Maricopa County per day, according to the latest Census data, we need to make sure we’re growing the right way. 

That means building neighborhoods with infrastructure in place from day one so we don’t have water issues like we’ve seen recently in New River.

That means protecting open space as the county has done in adding to the roster of regional parks and in funding parks improvements that account for the needs of adjoining neighborhoods and outdoor enthusiasts alike. 

That means being smart about water, like our Flood Control District is doing by diverting storm water back into the landscape so we can reuse it.

Growing the right way also means being smart about energy usage, like we’ve done in using solar thermal to provide more than 50 percent of the total hot water demand at our jail. Adding more shade downtown would be another practical and helpful step.

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Bill Gates serves as the District 3 Supervisor for Maricopa County. His Maricopa County District 3 reaches from the far southern boundary of McDowell Road, north to the border of Yavapai County, from the eastern boundary of Scottsdale Road in places, to the western boundary of 43rd Avenue and includes the areas of Anthem, New River, and Desert Hills.

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